"Character status." Yuan activated the system command through his mind as he did with the talisman.
Physique: Heaven Refining Physique
Physical Strength: 34
Mental Strength: 275
Soul Strength: 1,210
Physical Defense: 10
Mental Defense: 1,121
"What do these stats do?" He pondered and pondered, but alas, without a guide or someone to teach him, he was clueless. "From what the creators of this game said, there will be no guides or manuals, leaving us, the players, to learn about this game for ourselves…"
"There should be a leveling system in these types of games, but where is the experience bar? What is my level? This feels more like reality than playing a game.." Yuan opened and closed his hands into a fist.
Suddenly, he punched a nearby tree.
"Ah! It really hurts! Does it hurt because this game is sending pain signals to my brain, making it believe that I am actually hitting a real tree? That's… scary no matter how I think about it."
What if he got stabbed by a sword? What would that feel like? He didn't want to think about it.
"Umm… excuse me, the brother over there…" A sweet voice suddenly resounded behind Yuan, making him turn his head.
Standing right behind him was a cute little girl in red robes who looked to be around 10 years old, hugging a red ball in one arm and a book in the other.
'How did she get so close behind me without making a single sound? I didn't even notice her presence! And what is such a young girl doing here, in the middle of nowhere? Perhaps there is a city nearby?' Yuan became curious.
"Are you an NPC or a Player?" He asked her, who tilted her head sideways with a puzzled expression.
"NPC? Player? Xiao Hua is Xiao Hua," replied the little girl.
"So your name is Xiao Hua, huh. My name is Yuan."
"How did Brother Yuan manage to get in here?" She suddenly asked him with a curious gaze, almost like it is her first time seeing another person in her life.
"Get in here? We are outside, aren't we?"
She shook her head and said, "We are inside my family's garden."
"Huh? Garden?" Yuan looked stupefied at her answer. "This forest is your garden…?"
If this place that looks like a forest is her family's garden, then how big was the house itself? He couldn't imagine it. While it sounded unbelievable, it also explained why such a small girl like her would appear here.
"Sorry for intruding, but I was teleported here by some old man against my will…" He tried to explain without sounding too crazy. "I'll leave immediately, so can you tell me the way?"
But out of his expectations, the little girl shook her head. "Brother Yuan, since you are already here, why don't you play with Xiao Hua?"
"You want me to play with you?" He did not expect such a request from her.
"Xiao Hua is always alone and it is boring to play with herself."
"What about your family?"
"They are always busy and cannot play with Xiao Hua."
"Is that so…" Yuan felt sorry for her. He himself would be an outcast if it were not for his younger sister, so he knew very well what it feels like to be alone.
"Okay, this big brother will play with you!" He patted his chest with confidence. Due to his illness that left him unable to move even a limb, he did not have the leisure to play with his younger sister when she was young, so he saw this as an opportunity to experience what it would be like if he wasn't born with that illness.
"Really? You will play with Xiao Hua?" Her eyes glittered like the tiny stars in the sky, and her bright expression was adorable enough to soften the hearts of even the cruelest killers out there.
"Un. What do you want to play?"
"Then Xiao Hua will throw the ball to you, and you will throw it back, okay?" She placed the book down and showed him the ball.
"Let me get some distance… Okay, I am ready."
And without further ado, the two began playing throwing ball, and soon after, the merry laughter of a joyous little girl would echo in the forest.
While Yuan was spending his time entertaining a mysterious little girl, other Players would either be strengthening themselves or trying to gain more information about this world. Everybody rushed to surpass their friends and rivals in this new game that just came out, especially those who wish to become a professional and are required to be ahead of everybody else.
Minutes quickly turned into hours, and while everyone was grinding in their own ways, Yuan continued to play with the little girl.
'What monstrous stamina this little girl has! We have been throwing this ball back and forth for many hours, yet there is not a drop of sweat on her face! Even her small body shows no sign of fatigue!' Yuan smiled bittered, his entire body drenched in sweat. How could he, a young man, get worn out before a little girl that's half his age while playing throwing ball? Although he has not moved a muscle for many years in the real world, this was virtual reality; he shouldn't even be sweating, let alone feeling fatigued!
"What's wrong, Brother Yuan? You do not look so good… Are you sick?" Xiao Hua's words dealt significant damage to his pride.
"No… I am… just a bit… tired…" he said in an exhausted voice.
Hearing his words, she no longer threw the ball at him. "Then do you want to take a rest before we resume?"
"You… you still want to play?"
"Un!" she nodded vigorously, nearly making him cry.
"Okay… but let me rest for a bit…"
He sits down at a nearby tree, and Xiao Hua follows him, sitting beside him.
"Where is Brother Yuan from?" she asked.
"I am from a faraway place called Earth."
Seeing her glittering eyes, Yuan smiled. "Do you want to hear about my homeland? Although it is not much, I still have memories of the places I went as a child."
"Yes! I want to hear stories about this Earth!"
"Very well, then…"
Yuan began telling stories to Xiao Hua of the things he has done as a child, and she quickly became engrossed in his stories.
After an hour of nonstop storytelling, when he ran out of both breaths and stories to tell her, Xiao Hua opens the book in her grasp and spoke, "Since Brother Yuan played with Xiao Hua and even told her stories, Xiao Hua shall also tell you stories," she said. "This is Xiao Hua's gratitude to you, Brother Yuan!"
Yuan did not refuse and humbly accepted her appreciation.
However, when she began reading the book in her hands, he was surprised to find out that he wasn't able to understand a single word coming out of her mouth. It sounded more like chanting than a story!
But he didn't want to be rude to her, so he continued to listen. Soon, without being aware, he closed his eyes. After closing his eyes, he began feeling more relaxed and comfortable, almost as though he was experiencing some kind of hypnotization.
The weird chanting from Xiao Hua became less gibberish — he was beginning to comprehend her words, and information he never knew was being fed into his head. This continued for a whole hour before a sharp sound would suddenly wake Yuan from his meditative state.
<You have learned Heaven's Secret Art>
"Heaven's Secret Art…?"
Xiao Hua smiled gently upon hearing Yuan's mumble.
And suddenly, above the sky for every player to witness, a grand system notice appears.
<Player Yuan has become the world's first player to have learned a Divine-rank Skill! Congratulations!>
The announcement shocked every witness there, especially those Players at the top. The game has not even been out for a day, yet someone has managed to obtain a Divine-rank Skill already? Who was this Player 'Yuan', and what did he do to obtain it?
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